# [Om] Referencing OM symbols in text

Lars Hellström Lars.Hellstrom at residenset.net
Fri Mar 1 14:46:43 CET 2013

Writing a paper, it occurs to me that since most of the OM I've seen has
been the raw XML encodings of objects, I'm not so sure how one would
preferably refer to an OM symbol in ordinary text. If rather than saying for
example "Euler's gamma constant" one wishes to refer specifically to the OM
symbol for this constant what would one say? The full XML tag is of course
one possibility, but

... the occurrence of <OMS cd="nums1" name="gamma"/> in this
formula is most fortuitous, because then ...

doesn't feel natural. (And that is all supposed to be character data, so in
an XML source document it would be encoded as <OMS cd="nums1"
name="gamma"/> or something. This is about what someone printing the text
on paper should see, not what a robot crawling by should pick up.)

Some styles which I think I have seen are

gamma at nums1     ("email style"?)
nums1#gamma     (URI style)
nums1.gamma     (Popcorn style?)

Anyone wants to share any thoughts on what might be preferable, and why? And
how would one format these things? Is it for example:

\texttt{gamma at nums1}
\texttt{gamma}@\texttt{nums1}
\texttt{nums1\#gamma}
\texttt{nums1}\#\texttt{gamma}
\texttt{nums1.gamma}
$\mathrm{nums1.gamma}$

or what?

I have a feeling that the name at cd style might have been more common in the
early 00 decade, but that it has waned in favour of cd#name. I also have a
feeling that the name at cd style might be more in line with how these things
would naturally be spoken aloud. But my experience in these matters is limited.

Lars Hellström